New rules for NSW as cases remain high.
Greater Sydney's stay-at-home orders have been extended until the end of September, as cases of the Delta variant of COVID-19 remain stubbornly high.
The state recorded 642 locally acquired cases in the 24 hours to 8pm, along with four deaths.
There have been 10,582 locally acquired cases reported since 16 June 2021, when the first case in this outbreak was reported.— NSW Health (@NSWHealth) August 20, 2021
There are currently 470 COVID-19 cases admitted to hospital, with 80 people in intensive care, 27 of whom require ventilation.
In an effort to contain the spread, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced further restrictions, including a state-wide mask mandate. From Monday, all NSW residents will be required to wear a mask outdoors, except when exercising.
Greater Sydney's lockdown will also be extended for another month, except in Shellharbour and the Central Coast, which will be classified as regional areas. (The regional lockdown is currently due to be lifted on August 28.)
Meanwhile, the 12 Sydney LGAs that have been classified 'areas of concern' will face even tighter rules from Monday, including a nighttime curfew.
Residents in Bayside, Blacktown, Burwood, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield, Georges River, Liverpool, Parramatta, Penrith and Strathfield will not be permitted to leave their homes between the hours of 9pm and 5am unless for essential work or emergencies.
Residents in those areas will now only be permitted to exercise outdoors for one hour per day, and additional retail outlets including garden centres, hardware and pet-supply stores will be closed except for click-and-collect.
The state's Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant urged NSW residents beyond those LGAs to remain vigilant.
"Although we are seeing the cases predominantly in these areas, there are also rising cases outside those LGAs of concern. It is important there is no complacency anywhere," she said. "I am asking everyone to hang with us for the next 4-6 weeks. Buckle down.